Mike Leach isn’t known as a conventional football coach, far from it actually, but what he might be thinking (planning?) of doing with true juniors Gabe Marks and Brett Bartolone might be wisdom of the most conventional sort…
At least when looking ahead.
‘What(?)’ you say?
True, redshirting the leading receivers from the past two seasons for most teams would be a risky and nearly unheard of proposition, at least if injury didn’t play a part. In this particular case, injury may not play a part in whether or not the two are ready for the season from a health standpoint. However it may play a major role in whether or not the two got enough reps in camp to compete for their own jobs this season.
Of course WSU doesn’t and hasn’t released injury information since Leach’s arrival, but both players have been limited or missing for most of the Fall. I mentioned on Tuesday that Marks might be coming back strong, but an open-ended comment from the head man himself on perhaps redshirting the star has fans wondering exactly what’s going to happen.
Regardless of the outcome here, there are pros to redshirting both guys, especially in the same season and more especially this season. Both players could bring major (and I mean MAJOR) leadership and experience in the next two years. With all the new faces we’ll see in 2016, a receiving core that included Bartolone and Marks would still be unbelievable.
Another big factor, if indeed health is an issue, is getting these guys back up to full strength. If there was ever a year where the Cougs were stacked enough at receiver to really get away with sending these two guys on reserve for a Fall, it’s this one. With the emergence of guys like Kristoff Williams, Isiah Myers and Calvin Green, along with the rest of the returners this group is primed for big numbers either way.
Should be a very interesting Fall on this front.